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Case Digests

Cayetano vs. Monsod


Facts:
Respondent Christian Monsod was appointed as chairman of the COMELEC by
President Cory Aquino. Petitioner opposed the appointment because allegedly
Christian Monsod does not meet the qualifications provided in Section 1 Art IX-C of
the Constitution where it is said that the Chairman must be engaged in the practice
of law for at least ten years prior to his appointment. Before being appointed,
Christian Monsod worked with various private corporations he became an
operations officer and has rendered services to various companies as a legal and
economic consultant or chief executive officer. Aside from all of that, Christian
Monsod also became the General Secretary of NAMFREL and was also a member of
the Cnstitutional Commission in 1987.
Issue:
Whether or not Respondent Christian Monsod is engaged in the practice of law for
the past ten years.
Ruling:
The practice of law is not limited to the conduct of cases in court. It involves the
rendition of services requiring the knowledge and the application of legal principles
and technique to serve the interest of another with his consent. It is not limited to
appearing in court, or advising and assisting in the conduct of litigation, but
embraces the preparation of pleadings.
Therefore it is ruled that Christian Monsod is engaged in the practice of law and is
fully qualified to be the Chairman of the COMELEC.

Ulep vs. Legal Clinic


Facts:
Mauricio Ulep filed a case to cease and desist the advertisements given by the
respondent Legal Clinic as it was unauthorized and demeaning of the law
profession. The Legal Clinic was advertising legal services for divorce and
annulment of marriage overseas as well as advises regarding immigration problems
without the expertise of any certified attorneys.
Issue:
Whether or not the Legal Clinic is engaged in the unauthorized practice of law.
Ruling:
Yes. All of the advertisements given by the Legal Clinic require the application of the
law particularly the provisions of Persons and Family Relations. Their activity also
requires the legal principles and procedures related thereto, the legal advices based
thereon and which activities call for legal training, knowledge and experience.
Furthermore, measures should be taken to protect the general public from falling
prey to those who advertise legal services without being qualified to offer such
services.

In re: Almacen
Facts:
Vicente Raul Almacen surrendered his license and insists that his name be stricken
from the roll of attorneys in protest against what he therein asserts is a great
injustice committed against his client by Supreme Court. He ridiculed the members
of the court and gave so many defamatory remarks such as they are not only
blind, but also deaf and dumb. The reason why Almacens client lost the case was
because he failed to indicate the time and place in his motion for reconsideration
which is critical to make the pleading legally effective pursuant to Rule 13 of the
Rules of Court.
Issues:
Whether or not Almacen should be disciplined because of his actions.
Ruling:
Yes. It is expected of a lawyer to act with proper conduct and be respectfully to the
high courts at all times for he is just not a mere citizen but rather a member of the
legal profession. His scrutiny and contemptuous criticisms are uncalled for. As a
veteran lawyer, he should have known that a motion for reconsideration which
failed to notify the opposing party of the time and place of trial is a mere scrap of
paper and will not be entertained by the court. He has only himself to blame and he
is the reason why his client lost. Almacen was suspended indefinitely.

In re: Cunanan
Facts:
Congress passed R.A. No. 972 or also known as The Bar Flunkers Act in 1952. The
said act fixed the passing marks of bar examinations from 1946 up to 1955. This is
because of the varying difficulty of the exams and the strictness of grading during
the mentioned years. Albino Cunanan, a bar candidate himself assailed the
constitutionality of R.A. No. 972.
Issue:
Whether or not The Bar Flunkers Act is unconstitutional.
Ruling:
Yes. Because only the Judiciary has the original and exclusive power to decide on
who will be members of the Philippine Bar. Such Act also contradicts to the
provisions enshrined in the Rules of Court governing admission to the bar, "in order
that a candidate (for admission to the Bar) may be deemed to have passed his
examinations successfully, he must have obtained a general average of 75 per cent
in all subjects, without falling below 50 per cent in any subject." (Rule 127, sec. 14,
Rules of Court).

Alawi vs. Alauya


Facts:
A letter for a housing loan was issued by Sophia Alawis agency whereby the latter
is a sales representative for E.B. Villarosa Company. The said housing loan was
issued to Ashari Alauya but not long after, Alauya insist that the loan should be
cancelled because his signature and consent was allegedly obtained fraudulently.
Fueled by his anger, he gave libelous and malicious remarks to Alawi which forced
her to file charges against Alauya who is a public official as a member of the Sharia
courts.
Issues:
Whether or not Alauya violated the Code of conduct and Ethical Standards for Public
Officials.
Whether or not Alauya being a member of the Sharia bar can use the title
Attorney
Ruling:
With regards to the First issue:
Yes, Ashari Alauya violated the Code of Conduct particularly Section 4; public
officials and employees should, at all times respect the rights of others, and refrain
from doing acts contrary to law, public order, public safety and public interest
As for the Second issue:
No, the title of Attorney is reserved only to those who have been admitted as
members of the Integrated Bar. Court has already had an occasion to declare that
persons who pass the Sharia Bar are not full-fledged members of the Philippine Bar
and may practice law only before Sharia courts.

Cui vs. Cui


Facts:
This case is about a successional dispute between Jose Ma. Cui and his brother
Antonio. Both claim the as administrator to the Hospicio de Barili, a charitable
institution. Jose Ma. Cui invokes that he should be preferred because he is older
than Antonio as stated in Section 2 of Act No. 3239. However, the deed of donation
requires a titulo de abogado to be the administrator of the property.
Issue:
Whether or not Jose is entitled to be the administrator.
Ruling:
No. The term titulo de abogado means not mere possession of the academic
degree of Bachelor of Laws but membership in the Bar after due admission thereto,
qualifying one for the practice of law. Jose Ma. Cui is only a graduate of law and he
did not pass the bar. On the other hand, Antonio Cui is a member of the Philippine
bar by passing the examinations.